The complete guide for your very own PORT MONITORING contains the foundation tasks to implement a decent PORT MONITORING strategy with the additional why, how, tips & tricks and step-by-step walkthrough with pictures, to serve as visual aids.
Let's start with: WHAT IS A PORT?
In computer networking, a port is an endpoint for communication. Physical, as well as wireless connections, are terminated at ports of specific hardware devices. At the software level, within an operating system, a port is a logical construct that identifies a specific process or a type of network service. The software port is always associated with an IP address of a host and the protocol type of the communication. It completes the destination or origination network address of a message. Ports are identified for each protocol and address combination by 16-bit unsigned numbers, commonly known as the port number. Ports provide a multiplexing service for multiple services or multiple communication sessions at one network address. Specific port numbers are commonly reserved to identify specific services.
So basically this is our example, with a PORT MONITORING for owl MIN: https://owlpower.eu:2087. This should be always monitored!
Why have your own PORT MONITORING?
Simply put: if something happened with your PORT, this is the first alert that should notify you. The fact, that your server is running, and your domain is ok, does not mean, that your PORTS are working. The ports run vital parts for your business, and they should be monitored constantly.
To explain more simple, let's imagine, that your website has an online shop, as your primary online business. And your business sells several products. Now, let's imagine, that your online shop connects to an ERP to control stock management through a port; sends email purchase confirmations through another port; connects to a CRM to add new customers through another port; and so on. If any of these ports are not working, then, the entire shopping experience for a customer is affected, sometimes up to a point, when shoppers cannot buy or visitors cannot be converted to leads. So, monitoring your PORT(s) alongside your domain is crucial.
How to implement your PORT MONITORING?
Setting up a PORT MONITORING is extremely simple. Follow these steps:
- Step 1 - You just type in your domain:PORT URL in a browser. It should be a similar URL to this, as an example: https://owlpower.eu:2087
- Step 2 - Then copy your domain:PORT URL from the browser.
- Step 3 - Paste it into the "uptime monitoring" field inside your owl MIN.
- Step 4 - Click on the "Start owl MIN" button and wait for the confirmation dialogue.
If all went well, it should look like this:
What specific PORT(s) should you add to your PORT MONITORING?
- PORT:20,21 - File Transfer Protocol (FTP)
- PORT:22 - Secure Shell (SSH)
- PORT:25 - Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP)
- PORT:53 - Domain Name System (DNS)
- PORT:80 - Trough this port goes the HTTP communication for your entire website. This makes it accessible by your website visitors as well as access external servers for updates of the WP core, themes and plugins.
- PORT:110 - Post Office Protocol (POP3)
- PORT:143 - Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP)
- PORT:389 - Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP)
- PORT:443 - Trough this port goes the HTTPS communication for your entire website. This makes it accessible by your website visitors as well as access external servers for updates of the WP core, themes and plugins.
- PORT:465 - SMTP email secured connection using SSL
- PORT:587 - SMTP email secured connection using TSL
- PORT:993 - Internet Message Access Protocol over SSL (IMAPS)
- PORT:995 - Post Office Protocol 3 over TLS/SSL (POP3S)
- PORT:1433 - Microsoft SQL Server Database
- PORT:2082,2083 - cPanel default and SSL
- PORT:2086,2087 - WebHost Manager default and SSL
- PORT:2095 - cPanel default web mail
- PORT:2096 - cPanel default SSL web mail
- PORT:2195,2196 - Apple Push Notification Service and feedback service
- PORT:2368 - Ghost, the blogging platform
- PORT:3306 - MySQL Database
- PORT:5432 - PostgreSQL database system
- PORT:8069 - OpenERP 5.0 XML-RPC protocol
- PORT:8070 - OpenERP 5.0 NET-RPC protocol
- PORT:8332 - Bitcoin JSON-RPC server
- PORT:8443 - SW Soft Plesk Control Panel
- PORT:16384-16472 - Real-time Transport Protocol (RTP)
Tips & tricks for a professional PORT MONITORING:
- Make sure you always monitor your PORT on the correctly configured URL. Not all ports respond on HTTP or HTTPS!
- Consider checking intervals between 3 minutes and 10 minutes for your uptime monitoring. We recommend using the same time as you would intervene after receiving a downtime notification.
- Do not setup up several PORT MONITORING checks (especially from different providers). This can overload your server. Pick a single, reliable monitoring solution and stick to it.
Consider these arguments before you implement a PORT MONITORING:
- Many web hosting companies hide downtime site issues (or they try to downplay it). Extra proof to back up your claims always helps.
- Your web host may have an uptime guarantee, but it is often just a network uptime guarantee. It doesn’t guarantee that your PORT(s) or website will work.
- Your web host doesn’t guarantee that your PORT(s) or website will work if screw up yourself by accident or if you're getting an unexpected spike in visitors.
- There are no “outside business hours” on the web. Downtime at night in your time zone is downtime during office hours in some other place.
- Direct loss from downtime: Every time your PORT(s) are offline, you are losing money. "Direct loss" means lost revenue resulting from the unavailability of your PORT(s).
- You shouldn’t allow your users or customers to act as your monitoring. If they know before you do, that can easily get very embarrassing.
- Is your PORT(s) becoming more or less stable over time? There is no way you can know that without monitoring.
- Considering the business we’re in, here at owl power we may be biased, but we strongly believe that all website owners out there should monitor their PORTs. We wouldn’t be in this business otherwise, and we do know what we’re talking about.